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Microsoft prohibits employees from using Slack, AWS, and Google Docs

Jun 24, 2019, 6:40 am

Microsoft has reportedly banned its employees from using Slack and discouraged them from using a bunch of other apps including the Amazon Web Services (AWS) and Google Docs. Well, competition is nothing new in the technology sector, where companies make a living by copying and improving the products of others. The situation is not different at Microsoft, except for one difference: the company has a list of “prohibited technologies that are not advisable for its employees,” and it continues to grow.

A new report from GeekWire suggests that there are areas of Microsoft that maintain competitive practices and “blacklisting” of its rivals. Beyond a blacklist, the report revealed that internal uses of some competing products are viewed wrongly by Microsoft, including recognized services such as Amazon Web Services (AWS), Kaspersky software, Grammarly, Github and Slack, the current competition of Microsoft Teams.

Slack is the most controversial exclusion of this report, since, unlike the other services included in its blacklist, the company is discouraging and prohibiting its use to its employees. However, in the face of the growing wave of corporate espionage that is flooding the technological giants, Microsoft seems to be excusing itself on “security issues” for such bans.

A Microsoft employee told GeekWire that using Slack internally could jeopardize the company’s ongoing projects. The worker explained that the Free, Standard, and versions of Slack do not have the necessary controls for the protection of the intellectual property of the technological giant of Redmond. In the case of the Enterprise Grid version, although it complies with Microsoft’s security requirements, the company encourages the use of the company’s tools instead of those of the competition.

In the case of AWS, it is normal to some extent for the company to prohibit its use given the competition with Microsoft Azure, while Google Docs is the closest competitor to Microsoft Office 365. The significance of the news is that Microsoft finally recognizes Slack as a direct competitor, while Slack has also tried to get rid of Microsoft tools such as Outlook and Skype.

Interestingly, the section also includes Github, the collaborative development platform, although Microsoft owns it. The company advises employees not to use the Github cloud version to work with information, specifications, or secret code.

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